Auckland motorists heading west are being advised to use an alternative route after up to five cars crashed on the Northwestern Motorway this afternoon.

The crash happened just before 5pm in westbound lanes between the St Lukes Rd onramp and the Great North Rd offramp, a police spokesman said.

A caller told police debris was scattered across two lanes and there was oil leaking from one car.

It appeared nobody was seriously injured in the crash, he said. All the vehicles have been moved to the road shoulder but traffic is extremely slow in the area.

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Delays are expected back to Grafton Gully, the NZTA said.

Traffic is also heavy on all other Auckland motorways this evening.

A crash blocked the bus lane on the Southwestern Motorway after Rimu Rd before 5pm, while breakdowns in the Waterview Tunnel and just after Sunnynook also caused delays.